Certain online writer’s tools many of us already know and love: Google and Wikipedia for research, thesaurus.com, The Chicago Manual of Style online, Amazon’s Author Central for keeping your details up to date, Yahoo! groups for keeping in the loop, Google Docs for storing and collaborating. All are valuable resources and places to research, store, promote, and enhance our writing.
Today, I’ll share with you a few other websites and apps I use to help my writing, as well as keep my social networking manageable:
– Dropbox – The best online storage site. Even the free version has lots of space. I use it to back up my writing from my computer. I can access anything I have stored in it, anywhere. This makes transferring stuff between my laptop and netbook extra easy. When I’m working on something I like to save the updated versions of the manuscript to Dropbox as I go–just in case! You can download an app for your computer, tablet, and smartphone and connect everything.
– Google Street View – Writing about someplace you’ve never been? Need to know what a street, building, or area looks like? This is the most incredible resource ever created for visiting far-off places and getting information you might not be able to glean from text. I use it quite often. Great for absorbing the sights and atmosphere of the places you’re writing about, too.
– My Writing Spot – A place to write and store your work online, complete with a word count tracker. Very simple and easy to use. There’s probably a lot of other places online you can do the same thing, but I really like this one.
– Grammar Girl – An invaluable source for looking up those pesky grammar questions that gnaw at your brain, explained in a way that makes them easy to absorb and remember! I visit this site a lot.
– Spotify – If you’re like me, music enhances your writing experience. Personally, I love to have good mood music relevant to what I’m writing at the time. With Spotify, you can listen to very nearly any song ever made, whenever you want to. You can also create playlists and experience new artists without any monetary commitment. You might find the soundtrack to your next novel or the perfect song for one of your characters! The free version is just as awesome as the paid version, though it has ads. I have the paid version–super cheap, by the way–and it’s a worthwhile investment.
– Tweetdeck – Awesome app for keeping track of your social networking. You can make multiple columns for twitter lists and sync your Facebook with it as well. I’m sure a lot of you out there already use it, but if you don’t–try it out!
– VistaPrint – Need swag? Need it to be cheap and highly customizable? Want a huge selection of products you can make for your fans? This is a great service!
PDF to Word Converter – Sometimes you need to switch your files up. This is 100% free and does it perfectly.
How about you? Do you have any sites or apps that help your writing, either directly or indirectly?